Cross Compliance: Guide to Cross Compliance in England 2015 (GCCE 2015 v1)


Claimants may have their scheme payment(s) reduced if they don’t meet the GAECs and SMRs which apply to their holding.

If a claimant doesn’t meet (even by mistake) all the GAEC and SMR rules that apply to them, their scheme payment(s) may be reduced. Cross compliance penalties will apply to all the schemes which a claimant is involved in (read page 3 for a list of the schemes).

You must meet the rules across the whole agricultural area of your holding, regardless of the amount of land you entered into the schemes.

This includes common land which you exercise or hold rights of common over (including rights in gross). It also applies to all land including forestry for which payments are claimed under rural development schemes.


Claimants may still get a penalty even if they didn’t know that they hadn’t followed the rules properly. We define cases like this as ‘negligent’ if the non-compliance falls below the standard of care expected of a competent claimant.

For negligent cases, payments will normally be reduced by 3% (for each non-compliance). However, this could range from 1% to 5% depending on the extent, severity, reoccurrence and permanence of the non-compliance.

If a claimant doesn’t meet the same rule more than once in three consecutive calendar years, the penalty will get bigger. In these cases, the second time a penalty is applied it will be three times the size of the first penalty (even if that dates back to old SPS or rural development schemes).

This will keep happening if the claimant keeps breaking the same rule – until the penalty reaches 15%. After that, any more instances of non-compliance will be treated as ‘intentional’ (see below).


For intentional cases, payments will normally be reduced by 20%. However, this may be reduced to 15%, or increased up to 100% depending on the extent, severity, reoccurrence and permanence of the non-compliance.

In some extreme cases, claimants may also be stopped from applying for the Basic Payment Scheme and/or rural development schemes in the following year.

A claimant may lose their whole payment if they don’t allow one of our inspectors to carry out an inspection on the holding, (read pages 71 to 75 for more information about inspections).
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